Published: September 3, 2002
STAMFORD, CONN. – Neither the dog days of summer, nor vacations, could detract the 300-plus registered bidders from participating in Braswell Galleries’ August 5 auction. Illustrator collectors from all over the United States had high hopes as the private collection of the former art editor of the American Weekly magazine were offered.
Nineteen lots of illustration and art crossed the block representing an eclectic mix of artists, including J.C. Leyendecker, W. Louderback, Rico Tomaso, Lee Corney, Jules Gotlieb, Neal O’Keefe, Anbert Hirschfeld, Arthur Singer, Alphonso Palumbo, William Rose and H. Napenback.
Leading the pack was Joseph Christian Leyendecker’s oil on canvas, lot 50, “Thanksgiving 1648,” the cover illustration for the November 21, 1948, American Weekly. The puritan thanksgiving scene generated a bidding war between the eight telephone bidders, audience members and absentee bids. The hammer came down at $26,000, just one bid above the pre-auction low estimate of $25,000. Equally sought after was lot 51, Leyendecker’s oil on canvas “Baby Week,” depicting a chubby baby crowned with butterflies. An example of Leyendecker’s earlier work, the piece sold on the high estimate of $18,000.
Walt S. Louderback’s oil on canvas in green tones of a Spanish tavern also tied up the phone lines, selling to one collector for slightly above the low catalog estimate of $4/4,500.
Rico Tomaso was represented by four oil on canvases, each illustrating a wedding of different ethnicity — Oriental, Puritan, Native American and Dutch. The Native American marriage shot well past the high estimate of $1,200 to sell for $3,400, followed by the Dutch wedding selling above the preauction high of $700 for $1,500.
Several black and white illustrations by Lee Corney were offered, the rustic Wild West saloon scene selling above the high estimate of $700 for $1,200. Palumbo Alphonso’s oil on canvas of a costume ball with a cavalier and a flapper, preauction estimate $2,5/3,500, sold reasonably below estimate for $2,000.
Prices quoted do not reflect the 15 percent buyer’s premium.
5 Church Hill Road / Newtown, CT 06470
Mon - Fri / 8:00 am - 5:01 pm